Menu
Judge weighs testimony in RealDVD copy case

Judge weighs testimony in RealDVD copy case

RealNetworks, MPAA now await a ruling on whether the product can be put back on the market

A US federal judge is now considering whether to permit sales of RealDVD, after testimony on a pretrial injunction ended Thursday. That injunction has prevented RealNetworks from selling its DVD software since late September.

Judge Marilyn Patel, who also presided over the Napster case in 2001, will decide whether to keep RealDVD off the market pending the outcome of a lawsuit brought by the movie industry. Plaintiffs' lawyers claim the software can be used to make illegal copies of films and that it violates the Digital Millennium Copyright Act's prohibition on anti-circumvention technology.

The case has pitted the technology industry against the major movie studios in a fight over who gets to control how digital movies are used.

RealNetworks introduced RealDVD in September, but sales were quickly halted by the injunction granted when movie studios filed suit. The software lets users copy and play movies from their computer hard drives, much the way Apple's iTunes works with CDs. The motion picture studios worry that the software could be misused, however.

DVD copying software such as Handbrake has been widely available since the Content-Scrambling System (CSS) used to copy-protect DVDs was cracked a decade ago, but RealNetworks had been trying to walk the line between enforcing copy protection and giving users a way to store movies on their computers.

In court testimony late last month, RealNetworks CEO Rob Glaser had argued that scofflaws are unlikely to use RealDVD, which costs US$30 and prevents users from burning new DVDs of their movies. There are "dozens of products" that DVD pirates could use if they wanted to make illegal copies, he told the court. "All you have to do is Google DVD ripper."

Real was sued by Disney, Paramount, Sony, Twentieth Century Fox, NBC Universal, Warner Brothers, Viacom on Sept. 30, 2008. It filed countersuit the same day. The DVD Copy Control Association, which licenses the CSS system, is also involved in the case. The case is being heard in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in San Francisco.

After Judge Patel decides whether or not to continue blocking sales of RealDVD, the case will then move toward trial. The judge's ruling could come at any time.


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags realdvdreal networks

Featured

Slideshows

Meet the Reseller News 30 Under 30 Tech Awards 2020 winners

Meet the Reseller News 30 Under 30 Tech Awards 2020 winners

This year’s Reseller News 30 Under 30 Tech Awards were held as an integral part of the first entirely virtual Emerging Leaders​ forum, an annual event dedicated to identifying, educating and showcasing the New Zealand technology market’s rising stars. The 30 Under 30 Tech Awards 2020 recognised the outstanding achievements and business excellence of 30 talented individuals​, across both young leaders and those just starting out. In this slideshow, Reseller News honours this year's winners and captures their thoughts about how their ideas of leadership have changed over time.​

Meet the Reseller News 30 Under 30 Tech Awards 2020 winners
Reseller News Exchange Auckland: Beyond the myths — how partners can master cloud security

Reseller News Exchange Auckland: Beyond the myths — how partners can master cloud security

This exclusive Reseller News Exchange event in Auckland explored the challenges facing the partner community on the cloud security frontier, as well as market trends, customer priorities and how the channel can capitalise on the opportunities available. In association with Arrow, Bitdefender, Exclusive Networks, Fortinet and Palo Alto Networks. Photos by Gino Demeer.

Reseller News Exchange Auckland: Beyond the myths — how partners can master cloud security
Reseller News welcomes industry figures at 2020 Hall of Fame lunch

Reseller News welcomes industry figures at 2020 Hall of Fame lunch

Reseller News welcomed 2019 inductees - Leanne Buer, Ross Jenkins and Terry Dunn - to the fourth running of the Reseller News Hall of Fame lunch, held at the French Cafe in Auckland. The inductees discussed the changing face of the IT channel ecosystem in New Zealand and what it means to be a Reseller News Hall of Fame inductee. Photos by Gino Demeer.

Reseller News welcomes industry figures at 2020 Hall of Fame lunch
Show Comments